Friday, June 27, 2014

Where in the world is Asley Gonzalez?

100 Percent Judo asked a very interesting question: Why was Asley Gonzalez missing from the Havana Grand Prix?

Gonzalez, probably the world's best morote-seoi-nage exponent today, is ranked No. 2. Why was he not competing? Injury perhaps? Or some other reason?

Here is a simple reminder of what Havana was missing!





Wednesday, June 25, 2014

An innovative way to compete

What if you happened to be born in a country where the judo is very competitive and it's very difficult to make the national team? You can struggle on and try to reach the top but if you're No. 2, you won't be able to go to many international competitions and you certainly won't have a chance to go to the Olympics.

In the past, there were many good players who got frustrated because the No. 1 player in their division, in their country, was just too dominant. They never got a chance.

Imagine how it was for Japan's No. 2 players in the -48kg division during  the years when Japan's Ryoko Tani was competing at the global level (1991 through 2008).

Basically for about 18 years there was no chance for anyone else in that category in Japan to compete at the world stage. Japan's other -48kg players only managed to emerge after Tani retired from competition.


Today, some judo players have found an innovative way to get around this problem. They switch countries! 100 Percent Judo recently highlighted the story of how the Dutch player Elea de Gans (or rather, Elea Gansova) competes for Czech Republic. There are other players who have done something similar, which is highlighted in the insightful 100 Percent Judo article.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Judo Grand Prix, Budapest 2014 - DAY 2

(Via IJF)

-70kg | -78kg | +78kg | -81kg | -90kg | -100kg | +100kg

The Judo Grand Prix, Budapest 2014, concluded with the second and final day at the Papp Laszlo Sport Arena on Sunday.


The Hungarian fans were in great voice as they saw seven weight categories fighting on the tatami in search of Grand Prix silverware. The women’s -70kg, -78kg and +78kg categories and men’s -81kg, -90kg, -100kg and +100kg categories were all in action including the hosts’ heavyweight elite.

Budapest was the successful stage for Hungary’s first Grand Prix which attracted an impressive 405 judoka and 53 countries. The two-day event was the second IJF event to carry points towards qualification to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games following the Havana Grand Prix which took place a fortnight ago.  

Ahead of the final block there was a contract signing between the IJF and IBSA (International Blind Sports Federation) to initiate a collaboration between the federations and their respective governing of fully sighted and visually impaired judo.


Official Press Conference of the Budapest Grand Prix

Mr. Marius VIZER, IJF President, said: “After 56 years, the Hungarian sports landscape has now organised a great event which has international fame. Of course we are talking a lot about the Olympic qualification and it is the most important thing for the athletes but it’s also important to have the vision of sport development. Most of the opinions consider this Grand Prix as one of the most successful first editions. This city will be a candidate for the 2017 World Judo Championships.

“I congratulate Dr. Lazslo TOTH (President of the Hungarian Judo Association) who has a brilliant team. He already organised a great European Championships last year and this year the Grand Prix is a great success. At the same time, let me express that it is a great honour to have a long term contract with the IBSA. Congratulations to Mr. Norber BIRO. We will work closely. Thanks again and I wish great success to the Hungarian Judo.”

Dr. TOTH said: “We have been working together with Mr. Vizer for more than 10 years and both technically and tactically, we have a long term vision here in Budapest and this a great illustration of that vision. I am very happy to report to you that the Hungarian Government is very satisfied with the results obtained by our athletes and organisers and will strongly support the federation in the upcoming years.

“When we had to present our development programme to the government it was easy and hard at the same time. But generally speaking it was easy because we stick to the IJF programme. The aim is the highest level of sport development as an Olympic sport and the Hungarian Judo Association’s plan is to add a further 20,000 judoka.

“This Grand Prix gave great opportunity to thousands of young people to get closer and closer to what judo is.
This September, a special school programme will start in Hungary with the support of Mr. VIZER. In the near future we also want to establish an Olympic centre here in Budapest. It should become real in September.

“I am very happy with the last two days. The Hungarian Association had 170 volunteers with the 50-strong IJF team. The 2015 and 2016 editions are already contracted with the Hungarian Government and now I am very happy to report that the bid of the 2017 World Championships is in the hand of the Secretary of State. I hope that this autumn, this bid will become a reality. Everyone has a dream. My strongest dream is to organise the World Championships in Budapest in 2017.”


Mr. VIZER and Mr. BIRO signed a contract between the IJF and IBSA

Mr. Norbert BIRO, IBSA Judo Committee Chairman, said: “This day is a turning point in the history of IBSA. It is very necessary to have a close cooperation with the international federation for the development of sports.
In the past, we had the blind athlete sport and the normal people sport, but actually we have only one sport, which is judo. Of course IBSA is very pleased with the IJF and to receive help from Mr. VIZER. It is very important for those with a visual impairment to be integrated into the all sectors of society including sport. It is very useful for the society. We want to develop IBSA Judo for the professional level and that’s why we are very happy with the signing today as it;s a great chance to integrate visually impaired judo into other judo competitions.” 

Japan topped the medal table with six gold, one silver and two bronze as only heavyweight KAMIKAWA Daiki (JPN) missed on a medal from their 10-strong team.  

The Best Male Judoka award was presented to +100kg gold medallist Adam OKRUASHIVILI (GEO) while his female counterpart TACHIMOTO Megumi was awarded the Best Female Judoka
prize.


Best Male and Best Female Judoka 

The 2014 IJF World Judo Tour reconvenes in Mongolia’s capital city of Ulaanbaatar for the country’s second Grand Prix from 4-6 July.  

The full results can be seen at http://www.ippon.org/gp_bud2014.php


WOMEN

-70kg: Fit-again MARZOK wins the top prize 

Rijeka Grand Prix bronze medallist Iljana MARZOK (GER) reigned in the -70kg category as she won her final against Havana Grand Prix bronze medallist Barbara MATIC (CRO). MARZOK has been battling niggling injuries but looked fully fit and full of energy as she returned with a high-quality performance. The German judoka defeated teenager star MATIC by ippon from an ouchi-gari after just 36 seconds. 


In the first semi-final MARZOK bested World Championships-bound NUNIRA Karen (JPN) by trapping her with sankaku-gatame for 20 seconds to earn ippon. At the same stage MATIC defeated Paris Grand Slam silver medallist Fanny Estelle POSVITE (FRA) with two waza-ari scores.

The first bronze medal was won by world number 12 POSVITE who proved too strong for Qingdao Grand Prix winner CHEN Fei (CHN) as she was dispatched by ippon with two minutes remaining. The second bronze medal went to NUNIRA who defeated 21-year-old Warsaw European Open silver medallist Szaundra DIEDRICH (GER) vs NUNIRA, Karen (JPN) by a yuko from a harai-goshi. 

Final
MARZOK, Iljana (GER) vs MATIC, Barbara (CRO)               

Bronze Medal Fights
CHEN, Fei (CHN) vs POSVITE, Fanny Estelle (FRA)      
DIEDRICH, Szaundra (GER) vs NUNIRA, Karen (JPN)          


Final Results
1. MARZOK, Iljana (GER)               
2. MATIC, Barbara (CRO)                      
3. POSVITE, Fanny Estelle (FRA)                       
3. NUNIRA, Karen (JPN)                    
5. CHEN, Fei (CHN)              
5. DIEDRICH, Szaundra (GER)                  
7. PINOT, Margaux (FRA)         
7. BERNABEU, Maria (ESP)       


-78kg: Dutch delight for VERKERK

European silver medallist Marhinde VERKERK (NED) ousted world number three Anamari VELENSEK (SLO) in the -78kg final. World number two VERKERK was the busier of the two rivals as she received one shido penalty for passivity while VELENSEK received three shido penalties for passivity in a frustrating final.  


In the first semi-final VERKERK thwarted Samsun Grand Prix silver medallist Natalie POWELL (GBR) by a waza-ari score while at the same stage VELENSEK defeated European bronze medallist Abigel JOO (HUN) by ippon after 90 seconds.  

The first bronze medal was won by JOO who earned a huge ovation from the teeming home crowd as she held off Lucie LOUETTE KANNING (FRA). JOO was penalised for an overly defensive grip and passivity while Frenchwoman LOUETTE KANNING was penalised three times for passivity, an overly defensive grip and again for passivity. The second bronze medal went losing semi-finalist POWELL who confidently and comprehensively prevailed against Ivana MARANIC (CRO). POWELL scored a waza-ari from a harai-makikomi and added a second from osaekomi-waza.

Final
VELENSEK, Anamari (SLO) vs VERKERK, Marhinde (NED)   

Bronze Medal Fights
LOUETTE KANNING, Lucie (FRA) vs JOO, Abigel (HUN)
MARANIC, Ivana (CRO) vs POWELL, Natalie (GBR)   


Final Results
1. VERKERK, Marhinde (NED)  
2. VELENSEK, Anamari (SLO)   
3. POWELL, Natalie (GBR)     
3. JOO, Abigel (HUN)    
5. MARANIC, Ivana (CRO)
5. LOUETTE KANNING, Lucie (FRA)    
7. TORT MERINO, Marta (ESP)  
7. TURKS, Victoriia (UKR)   


+78kg: TACHIMOTO trumps IAROMKA 

Three-time world bronze medallist TACHIMOTO Megumi (JPN) was victorious against Svitlana IAROMKA (UKR) in the women’s heavyweight final on Sunday. TACHIMOTO saw her opponent receive a shido for passivity and, when the moment presented itself, powered into action to throw with a harai-goshi for ippon after two minutes. 


In the first semi-final TACHIMOTO defeated former European bronze medallist Iryna KINDZERSKA (UKR) by scoring a waza-ari and then a second from trapping her opponent in a kami-shiho-gatame for 15 seconds. In the second semi-final IAROMKA booked her place in the final by conquering European runner-up Larisa CERIC (BIH) by ippon after two minutes of action.

The first bronze medal was won by CERIC (BIH) who submitted Maryna SLUTSKAYA (BLR) with a koshi-jime strangle after 80 seconds. The second bronze medal was won by European bronze medallist Jasmin KUELBS (GER) who inflicted a second defeat in a row for KINDZERSKA. KUELBS took the lead with a waza-ari from ashi-waza and controlled her opponent on the ground to trap her in a kuzure-kesa-gatame for 15 seconds to win by wazari-awasette-ippon.    

Final
TACHIMOTO, Megumi (JPN) vs IAROMKA, Svitlana (UKR)  

Bronze Medal Fights
SLUTSKAYA, Maryna (BLR) vs CERIC, Larisa (BIH)  
KUELBS, Jasmin (GER) vs KINDZERSKA, Iryna (UKR)   


Final Results
1. TACHIMOTO, Megumi (JPN)  
2. IAROMKA, Svitlana (UKR)  
3. CERIC, Larisa (BIH)    
3. KUELBS, Jasmin (GER)    
5. SLUTSKAYA, Maryna (BLR)  
5. KINDZERSKA, Iryna (UKR)      
7. LI, Yang (CHN)    
7. PAKENYTE, Santa (LTU)  

MEN 

-81kg: Russia take gold and silver 

Russian youngster Khasan KHALMURZAEV (RUS) won an all-Russian -81kg final as two-time World Judo Masters bronze medallist Sirazhudin MAGOMEDOV (RUS) lost out. KHALMURZAEV and MAGOMEDOV traded shido penalties for passivity as both men lacked purpose before the former tapped out his more experienced teammate with a juji-gatame. 


In the first semi-final MAGOMEDOV denied the hosts a finalist as Laszlo CSOKNYAI (HUN) fell by a buzzer-beating waza-ari while at the same stage KHALMURZAEV defeated world bronze medallist Alain SCHMITT (FRA) on shido penalties.
  
The first bronze medal was won by Frenchman SCHMITT who swept past Szabolcs KRIZSAN (HUN) by ippon after two minutes. The second bronze medal went to Roman MOUSTOPOULOS (GRE) as Hungary suffered another near miss when Laszlo CSOKNYAI (HUN) scored a yuko in the last second from a determined uchi-mata effort. 

Final
KHALMURZAEV, Khasan (RUS) vs MAGOMEDOV, Sirazhudin (RUS)    

Bronze Medal Fights
KRIZSAN, Szabolcs (HUN) vs SCHMITT, Alain (FRA)  
MOUSTOPOULOS, Roman (GRE) vs CSOKNYAI, Laszlo (HUN)        


Final Results
1. KHALMURZAEV, Khasan (RUS)  
2. MAGOMEDOV, Sirazhudin (RUS)      
3. SCHMITT, Alain (FRA)   
3. MOUSTOPOULOS, Roman (GRE)
5. KRIZSAN, Szabolcs (HUN)  
5. CSOKNYAI, Laszlo (HUN)      
7. BOTTIEAU, Joachim (BEL)
7. OTT, Marcel (AUT)    


-90kg: NISHIYAMA ends Hungarian hopes

Double world silver medallist NISHIYAMA Daiki after defeating home fighter TOTH Krisztian (HUN) in the -90kg final by a waza-ari score. European bronze medallist TOTH, 20, is an exciting talent on the rise and claimed the first Grand Prix medal of his burgeoning career.  


In the first semi-final NISHIYAMA defeated Milan RANDL (SVK) on shido penalties with two against the Japanese judoka and three against the Slovakian. In the second semi-final TOTH beat veteran Guillaume ELMONT (NED) by holding him down for 20 seconds for ippon.

The first bronze medal was won by Noel VAN T END (NED) his teammate Guillaume ELMONT (NED) was unable to compete due to injury. The second bronze medal was won by Khusen KHALMURZAEV (RUS) who triumphed against losing semi-finailst RANDL by ippon from a harai-goshi with 17 seconds left. 

Final
TOTH, Krisztian (HUN) vs NISHIYAMA, Daiki (JPN)           

Bronze Medal Fights
VAN T END, Noel (NED) vs ELMONT, Guillaume (NED)       
KHALMURZAEV, Khusen (RUS) vs RANDL, Milan (SVK)          


Final Result
1. NISHIYAMA, Daiki (JPN)                
2. TOTH, Krisztian (HUN)           
3. VAN T END, Noel (NED)              
3. KHALMURZAEV, Khusen (RUS)             
5. ELMONT, Guillaume (NED)                        
5. RANDL, Milan (SVK)                    
7. VER, Gabor (HUN)        
7. GOGOTCHURI, Zviad (GEO)


-100kg: GROL grinds out glory  

Paris Grand Slam bronze medallist Henk GROL (NED) was the only man able to stop HAGA Ryunosuke (JPN) on Sunday as he scored ippon with two minutes remaining from a tani-otoshi. GROL defeated the 23-year-old and raised his hands in the air as he continued to build momentum towards the World Championships having finished second last year in Rio. 


In the first semi-final HAGA defeated Martin PACEK (SWE) by ippon after leading with a waza-ari. At the same stage GROL dispatched Elmar GASIMOV (AZE) by a solitary waza-ari which was the only score of the contest.

The first bronze medal was won by GASIMOV who was victorious against Artem BLOSHENKO (UKR) from  yuko score while both judoka had three shido penalties and narrowly escaped disqualification which would have happened if a fourth penalty was given to either fighter. The second bronze medal went to PACEK who defeated Jevgenijs BORODAVKO (LAT) by scoring a yuko from a ouchi-gari. The Swede went back to the same technique to produce the same score with 12 seconds remaining.

Final
GROL, Henk (NED) vs HAGA, Ryunosuke (JPN)      

Bronze Medal Fights
BLOSHENKO, Artem (UKR) vs GASIMOV, Elmar (AZE)       
BORODAVKO, Jevgenijs (LAT) vs PACEK, Martin (SWE)                


Final Result
1. GROL, Henk (NED)                    
2. HAGA, Ryunosuke (JPN)                
3. GASIMOV, Elmar (AZE)                         
3. PACEK, Martin (SWE)                 
5. BLOSHENKO, Artem (UKR)                
5. BORODAVKO, Jevgenijs (LAT)                      
7. MINASKIN, Grigori (EST)
7. WOJCIK, Jakub (POL)       


+100kg: Georgian anthem rings out for OKRUASHVILI

European silver medallist Adam OKRUASHVILI (GEO) topped the heavyweight men’s field in Budapest as he halted the run of Marius PASKEVICIUS (LTU) in the +100kg final. OKRUASHVILI scored a waza-ari from a yoko-shiho-gatame and that was decisive after five minutes as the Georgian claimed the final gold medal of the inaugural Budapest Grand Prix. 


In the first semi-final OKRUASHVILI defeated Havana Grand Prix bronze medallist Barna BOR (HUN) by ippon after three minutes of action to the dissatisfaction of the home fans. In the second semi-final PASKEVICIUS outgunned former Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Andrey VOLKOV (RUS) by a waza-ari score.

The first bronze medal was won by VOLKOV who returned to winning ways at the expense of Madrid European Open winner Stanislav BONDARENKO (UKR) who had a yuko advantage after five minutes having previously scored a waza-ari. The second bronze medal went to Samsun Grand Prix bronze medallist Levani MATIASHVILI (GEO) who defeated BOR with a huge harai-makikomi for ippon which won the applause of the home fans.

Final
OKRUASHVILI, Adam (GEO) vs PASKEVICIUS, Marius (LTU)             

Bronze Medal Fights
BONDARENKO, Stanislav (UKR) vs VOLKOV, Andrey (RUS)      
MATIASHVILI, Levani (GEO) vs BOR, Barna (HUN)           


Final Results
1. OKRUASHVILI, Adam (GEO)                
2. PASKEVICIUS, Marius (LTU)                            
3. MATIASHVILI, Levani (GEO)       
3. VOLKOV, Andrey (RUS)                 
5. BOR, Barna (HUN)        
5. BONDARENKO, Stanislav (UKR)                
7. SHERRINGTON, Chris (GBR)         
7. CERAJ, Matjaz (SLO)         

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Judo Grand Prix, Budapest 2014 - DAY 1

(Via IJF)

-48kg | -52kg | -57kg | -63kg | -60kg | -66kg | -73kg

 

The opening day of the first Budapest Grand Prix was hotly-contested in the capital city as some of the most exciting lightweight in judo took to the tatami at the Papp Laszlo Sport Arena.  


The World Judo Tour’s first stop in Hungary featured seven weight categories on day one as the women’s -48kg, -52kg, -57kg and -63kg categories and men’s -60kg, -66kg and -73kg categories were all contested.

Ahead of the final block, the Hungarian Judo Association staged an opening ceremony which celebrated the first IJF competition in one of Europe’s largest cities.


From L-R: Dr. Laszlo TOTH, Mr. Marius VIZER, Dr. Simicsko ISTUAN

Dr. Simicsko ISTUAN, State Secretary of Sport and Youth Affairs, said: “Hungary has enjoyed outstanding results in judo. I have pleasure to welcome supporters of this sport in Budapest and I wish you a great time and a lot of success in the competition.”

Dr. Laszlo TOTH, Hungarian Judo Association President, said: “I welcome you all to this important event and first IJF Grand Prix in Hungary. I would like to thank the Hungarian government and all the athletes for supporting us.
This competition counts towards the Olympic qualification for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and with that said I wish you all good luck and hope to see you here next year.”

Dr. Laszlo TOTH presented commemorative medals to Mr. Marius VIZER, IJF President and Dr. ISTUAN.  



Mr. VIZER presented an IJF Gold Medal to Dr. ISTUAN, to recognise his contribution to the development of national judo in the country.

Mr. Marius VIZER, IJF President, then addressed the crowd, athletes and officials to open the competition.


“After 56 editions of successful Hungarian Cup, the Hungarian Association has now hosted a Grand Prix for the first time. I would like to thank the government and say a special thank you to OTB Bank for their continued support. I declare the Grand Prix of Hungary officially open.”

After day one in Budapest, four-star Japan lead the way having won gold in the four of the seven categories while Kondo Ami (JPN) won -48kg bronze to ensure all five judoka fighting for Japan on day one clinched a richly-deserved medal.  

FOLLOW THE COMPETITION



WOMEN

-48kg: European champion wins at home 

European champion Eva CSERNOVICZKI (HUN) was the pride of Hungary on Saturday as she won her country’s first gold medal with victory against Sofia European Open bronze medallist Valentina MOSCATT (ITA). Olympic bronze medallist CSERNOVICZKI was a hot favourite coming into the event and the crowd sensed they were going to witness something special as they reacted to every movement from their lightweight ace. MOSCATT received a shido after 90 seconds for going out of the area and that set the tone for the contest as her opponent was more active and more assured. Both judoka received a shido for not taking a grip and MOSCATT was penalised again for passivity to settle the contest on penalties in the favour of the home figher after four minutes.  


In the first semi-final CSERNOVICZKI (HUN) downed the highly-capable African champion Taciana LIMA-BALDE (GBS) by ippon with 18 seconds remaining in their contest after her challenger stalled with false attacks earning her two shido penalties. In the second semi-final MOSCATT bested Havana Grand Prix bronze medallist Julia FIGUEROA (ESP) by a slender advantage as a yuko went unanswered by the in-form Spaniard.

The first bronze medal was won by Ulaanbaatar Grand Prix silver medallist GALBADRAKH Otgontsetseg (MGL) against world number 15 LIMA-BALDE. The Mongolian trailed by two penalties for a false attack and a gripping infringement but fought back to score a waza-ari from ashi-waza and transitioned to hold down her opponent for 15 seconds to earn a second and match-winning waza-ari. The second bronze medal was won by 19-year-old Tokyo Grand Slam winner KONDO Ami (JPN) who held down FIGUEROA with a mune-gatame to earn the biggest victory of her career outside of her homeland. 

Final
CSERNOVICZKI, Eva (HUN) vs MOSCATT, Valentina (ITA)            

Bronze Medal Fights
GALBADRAKH, Otgontsetseg (MGL) vs LIMA-BALDE, Taciana (GBS)  
KONDO, Ami (JPN) vs FIGUEROA, Julia (ESP)    


Final Results
1. CSERNOVICZKI, Eva (HUN)                  
2. MOSCATT, Valentina (ITA)                         
3. GALBADRAKH, Otgontsetseg (MGL)             
3. KONDO, Ami (JPN)        
5. LIMA-BALDE, Taciana (GBS)                  
5. FIGUEROA, Julia (ESP)            
7. ROSSENEU, Amelie (ISR)     
7. CHERNIAK, Maryna (UKR)      


-52kg: Kosovo ace KELMENDI earns more plaudits 

World champion Majlinda KELMENDI (KOS) was the outstanding performer in the -52kg category but was unable to win the final in the crowd-pleasing fashion she is accustomed to as 19-year-old Odette GIUFFRIDA (ITA) was ruled out by an ankle injury. 


In the first semi-final Madrid European Open winner GIUFFRIDA defeated Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Petra NAREKS (SLO) on shido penalties while at the same stage all-action KELMENDI dispatched Baku Grand Slam winner Annabelle EURANIE (FRA) who toiled her way to a disqualification for four shido penalties.

The first bronze medal was won by NAREKS as French hopes were dashed in the -52kg category. The interesting dynamic saw Olympic bronze medallist Priscilla GNETO (FRA) lose out by disqualification for four shido penalties as she lived dangerously on the edge of the tatami and paid the price. Moments later Oleksandra STARKOVA (UKR) inflicted a last-ditch defeat on EURANIE by a yuko score as France missed out on the medal podium. 

Final
GIUFFRIDA, Odette (ITA) vs KELMENDI, Majlinda (KOS)  

Bronze Medal Fights
GNETO, Priscilla (FRA) vs NAREKS, Petra (SLO)
STARKOVA, Oleksandra (UKR) vs EURANIE, Annabelle (FRA)    


Final Results
1. KELMENDI, Majlinda (KOS)               
2. GIUFFRIDA, Odette (ITA)       
3. NAREKS, Petra (SLO)             
3. STARKOVA, Oleksandra (UKR)           
5. GNETO, Priscilla (FRA)         .            
5. EURANIE, Annabelle (FRA)               
7. MAROS, Barbara (HUN)
7. SUNDBERG, Jaana (FIN)         


-57kg: Olympic champion stars for Japan 

Olympic champion MATSUMOTO Kaori (JPN) defeated Madrid European Open silver medallist Helene RECEVEAUX (FRA) to remain undefeated on the World Judo Tour since her London 2012 success.MATSUMOTO countered an ouchi-gari attempt from her opponent with a ko-soto-gari for a waza-ari score and that effort separed both judoka after four minutes. 


In the first semi-final MATSUMOTO defeated long-time rival Corina CAPRIORIU (ROU) in a rematch of the London 2012 Olympic final as she scored successive waza-ari efforts from an osoto-gari and a de-ashi-barai. In the second semi-final Baku Grand Slam runner-up Vlora BEDETI (SLO) fell to RECEVEAUX by ippon after just 84 seconds.

The first bronze medal was won by home judoka Hedvig KARAKAS (HUN) who triumphed against CAPRIORIU to earn not only her country’s first medal of the competition but also Hungary’s 500th international judo medal. KARAKAS was eager to take the contest to the ground and grafted away to eat up the clock having opening the scoring with a yuko which went unanswered. The second bronze medal was won by Vlora BEDETI (SLO) who edged out former World Judo Masters winner DORJSUREN Sumiya (MGL) on shido penalties with three against the Mongolian and only one against the busier Slovenian.      

Final
MATSUMOTO, Kaori (JPN) vs RECEVEAUX, Helene (FRA)       

Bronze Medal Fights
KARAKAS, Hedvig (HUN) vs CAPRIORIU, Corina (ROU)       
DORJSUREN, Sumiya (MGL) vs BEDETI, Vlora (SLO)          


Final Results
1. MATSUMOTO, Kaori (JPN)                       
2. RECEVEAUX, Helene (FRA)          
3. KARAKAS, Hedvig (HUN)                 
3. BEDETI, Vlora (SLO)                     
5. CAPRIORIU, Corina (ROU)                    
5. DORJSUREN, Sumiya (MGL)                
7. ROPER, Miryam (GER)       
7. LU, Tongjuan (CHN)       


-63kg: TASHIRO triumph in Budapest  

Paris Grand Slam bronze medallist TASHIRO Miku (JPN) continued Japan’s hot streak as she beat Havana Grand Prix bronze medallist Martyna TRAJDOS (GER) to win the -63kg gold medal. TRAJDOS chalked up two shido penalties before TASHIRO seized control by scoring a waza-ari and there was no way back for the German. 


In the first semi-final TRAJDOS conquered European bronze medallist Agata OZDOBA (POL) in a bout which was settled on shido penalties. OZDOBA was denied a final berth as she received three shido penalties while her opponent was punished with two. In the second semi-final TASHIRO sent world number three Anicka VAN EMDEN (NED) into the repechage as a solitary shido against the popular Dutchwoman was the difference.

The first bronze medal was won Madrid European Open bronze medallist Maelle DI CINTIO (FRA) who dismissed OZDOBA by scoring a waza-ari with a minute left to break the deadlock and had the composure to see out the remaining time. The second bronze medal went to VAN EMDEN who defeated Sofia European Open bronze medallist Ekaterina VALKOVA (RUS) by a yuko score from osaekomi-waza as the Russian slipped out after 14 seconds. 

Final
TRAJDOS, Martyna (GER) vs TASHIRO, Miku (JPN)           

Bronze Medal Fights
DI CINTIO, Maelle (FRA) vs OZDOBA, Agata (POL)       
VALKOVA, Ekaterina (RUS) vs VAN EMDEN, Anicka (NED)   


Final Results
1. TASHIRO, Miku (JPN)                         
2. TRAJDOS, Martyna (GER)              
3. DI CINTIO, Maelle (FRA)                  
3. VAN EMDEN, Anicka (NED)             
5. OZDOBA, Agata (POL)                      
5. VALKOVA, Ekaterina (RUS)           
7. SZABO, Franciska (HUN)        
7. PUCHE, Isabel (ESP)

MEN 

-60kg: Unstoppable world champion TAKATO maintains winning run

World champion TAKATO Naohisa (JPN) preserved his world number one status as he defeated European silver medallist and world number two Amiran PAPINASHVILI (GEO) in the -60kg final. TAKTAO, 21, who is unbeaten on the World Judo Tour since 2012, fired forward to win by ippon with 90 seconds later after absorbing the best attacks of his opponent. TAKATO pointed at the Japanese flag on his judogi to show his pride and note the success of his team on the opening day. 


In the first semi-final PAPINASHVILI (GEO) wore down world silver medallist DASHDAVAA Amartuvshin (MGL) who was penalised four times with a shido to receive hansoku-make. In the second semi-final TAKATO defeated European bronze medallist and world number 14 Ilgar MUSHKIYEV (AZE) by submitting him with shime-waza after just 40 seconds.

The first bronze medal was won by Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Sofiane MILOUS (FRA) who overtook after his rival opening the scoring with the same score before the Frenchman followed up on an attack on the edge of the area by grabbing the arm of his opponent and applying a juji-gatame in a breathtaking example of speed and ingenuity. The second bronze medal was claimed by MUSHKIYEV who defeated Tbilisi Grand Prix silver medallist Yerkebulan KOSSAYEV (KAZ) with two waza-ari scores for a comprehensive victory. 
         
Final
PAPINASHVILI, Amiran (GEO) vs TAKATO, Naohisa (JPN)             

Bronze Medal Fights
MILOUS, Sofiane (FRA) vs DASHDAVAA, Amartuvshin (MGL)        
KOSSAYEV, Yerkebulan (KAZ) vs MUSHKIYEV, Ilgar (AZE)   


Final Result
1. TAKATO, Naohisa (JPN)                               
2. PAPINASHVILI, Amiran (GEO)           
3. MILOUS, Sofiane (FRA)                  
3. MUSHKIYEV, Ilgar (AZE)                 
5. DASHDAVAA, Amartuvshin (MGL)                      
5. KOSSAYEV, Yerkebulan (KAZ)                
7. GERCHEV, Yanislav (BUL)         
7. SHIRINLI, Vugar (AZE)       


-66kg: TAKAICHI wins his first Grand Prix gold medal

Jeju Grand Prix silver medallist TAKAICHI Kengo (JPN) won the first Grand Prix gold medal of his flourishing career as he defeated the in-form Madrid European Open winner Dzmitry SHERSHAN (BLR). TAKACIHI, 21, scored a waza-ari and yuko in quick succession before world number 17 SHERSHAN replied with a yuko. The Japanese youngster resisted the late rally from his opponent to ensure a significant jump on the World Ranking List ahead of competing in his first World Championships in August. 


In the first semi-final SHERSHAN ended the run of world number eight Nijat SHIKHALIZADA (AZE) by ippon with 15 seconds remaining in their previously scoreless contest. In the second semi-final TAKAICHI upstaged former world champion Georgii ZANTARAIA (UKR) as a waza-ari was the difference after both men earned yuko scores.

The first bronze medal was won by SHIKHALIZADA who was good value for a place on the podium after defeating former Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Shalva KARDAVA (GEO) following some flashes of quality in the preliminaries. SHIKHALIZADA left it late as he prodced the first and only score of the contest with 20 seconds left as his Georgian rival was caught with a a ko-uchi-gari for a waza-ari score. The second bronze medal went to ZANTARAIA who bested rank outsider Pawel ZAGRODNIK (POL) by ippon from an o-goshi after 90 seconds.

Final
SHERSHAN, Dzmitry (BLR) vs TAKAICHI, Kengo (JPN)         

Bronze Medal Fights
KARDAVA, Shalva (GEO) vs SHIKHALIZADA, Nijat (AZE)       
ZAGRODNIK, Pawel (POL) vs ZANTARAIA, Georgii (UKR)         


Final Results
1. TAKAICHI, Kengo (JPN)                            
2. SHERSHAN, Dzmitry (BLR)              
3. SHIKHALIZADA, Nijat (AZE)                           
3. ZANTARAIA, Georgii (UKR)                       
5. KARDAVA, Shalva (GEO)              
5. ZAGRODNIK, Pawel (POL)                
7. DEGEN, Junior (NED)      
7. FLICKER, Tal (ISR)       


-73kg: Top seed SCVORTOV delivers the gold

Top seed Victor SCVORTOV (UAE) delivered the goods in Hungary as Olympic champion Lasha SHAVDATUASHVILI (GEO) suffered an injury during the -73kg and had to pull out of the contest. Both judoka had three shido penalties as the final minute approached as they infringed for negative gripping and passivity. SCVORTOV tried a sweep and SHAVDATUASHVILI, who cut a forlorn figure after his early exit in Havana, landed awkwardly and suffered a knee injury. Classy SCVORTOV was concerned about his opponent and remained by his side to check on his condition. 



In the first semi-final SHAVDATUASHVILI defeated former world champion KHASHBAATAR Tsagaanbaatar (MGL) by ippon from an ouchi-gari after scoring with a yuko and waza-ari. In the second semi-final SCVORTOV battled past Zebeda REKHVIASHVILI (GEO) as he scored a waza-ari with 70 seconds left from a hold down which sucked the energy out of his opponent.

The first bronze medal was won by KHASHBAATAR who defeated teammate GANBAATAR Odbayar (MGL). KHASHBAATAR scored a waza-ari from ashi-waza and added a second by holding his compatriot down in a mune-gatame for 15 seconds. The second bronze medal went to REKHVIASHVILI who battled past former European bronze medallist Pierre DUPRAT (FRA). The Georgian struck with three minutes on the clock as he registered the maximum score to end the contest. 

Final
SHAVDATUASHVILI, Lasha (GEO) vs SCVORTOV, Victor (UAE)  

Bronze Medal Fights
GANBAATAR, Odbayar (MGL) vs KHASHBAATAR, Tsagaanbaatar (MGL)       
DUPRAT, Pierre (FRA) vs REKHVIASHVILI, Zebeda (GEO)           


Final Results
1. SCVORTOV, Victor (UAE)                    
2. SHAVDATUASHVILI, Lasha (GEO)             
3. KHASHBAATAR, Tsagaanbaatar (MGL)                 
3. REKHVIASHVILI, Zebeda (GEO)                 
5. GANBAATAR, Odbayar (MGL)                      
5. DUPRAT, Pierre (FRA)                    
7. DREBOT, Serhiy (UKR)        
7. PARLATI, Enrico (ITA)       

Judo Grand Prix, Budapest 2014 - PREVIEW

(Via IJF)

The first Budapest Grand Prix has proved an instant hit with judoka as 407 athletes from 53 countries will compete on Saturday and Sunday at the Papp Laszlo Sport Arena. 

 

The two-day Grand Prix comes two weeks after the inaugural Havana Grand Prix which was the first IJF event to carry points towards qualification for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Budapest is home to the IJF Presidential Office and the Hungarian capital hosted a highly-regarded European Championships at the same venue in 2013.

Hosts Hungary have selected 54 judoka including Olympic, world and European medallists.

Japan has entered a 10-strong team including eight members of their World Championships team as KONDO Ami, MATSUMOTO Kaori, TASHIRO Miku, NUNIRA Karen, TACHIMOTO Megumi, TAKATO Naohisa, TAKAICHI Kengo and KAMIKAWA Daiki all fight before the annual extravaganza in August.

226 men and 181 women will compete in Budapest as the first Budapest Grand Prix has attracted a world-class field.

The draw took place at the competition venue on Friday afternoon as the delegations had an early taste of this weekend’s battleground.


Official Draw of the Budapest Grand Prix

Mr. Marius VIZER, IJF President, made the welcoming address.

“Dear guests, ladies and gentlemen, I welcome all of you to the first Grand Prix of Budapest. I have great pleasure to introduce to you to some special guests including the President of the Mini Golf Federation Mr. Gerhard Zimmermann from Germany and the President of the International Fistball Association Mr. Karl Weiss

“There are a lot of members here from the Pan American judo team, Asian judo, Europe, Africa and Oceania. Welcome to all of you. I hope we will enjoy together the first Grand Prix in Budapest and it will be success. I wish all coaches, athletes and delegates to achieve success and the best for their delegation.”

Dr. Laszlo TOTH, Hungarian Judo Association President, said: “Dear Mr. President, committee members, VIP guests, dear everybody who has accepted our invitation to the first Grand Prix in Budapest. I hope we open a new tradition with this competition, I hope we start and continue it. It is a great pleasure to welcome everyone. We have the best competitors from judo world, best coaches and athletes. I hope we enjoy together this Olympic qualification tournament. Thank you very much for your attention.”

Mr. Jan SNIJDERS, IJF Head Referee Director, said: “We all know about the current rules and their application. Three points I want emphasise your attention to are taking a grip in kumi kata, not going outside the area and don’t make false attacks. I wish all of you a lot of success at this Grand Prix in Budapest.”


The IJF Refereeing Commission held a seminar ahead of the competition at the House of Sports Hungary with referees and coaches. The seminars, which were introduced at the Tbilisi Grand Prix, are used to create an open and positive discussion on the key areas from both groups.

Mr. SNIJDERS said: “We had a very nice discussion as we used to seminar to further clarify rules with those who had questions and illustrated clear videos which were well received. Video examples included a focus on the kumi kata grips and going outside the area. We anticipated that the next seminar will be held in Tyumen ahead of the Grand Slam in July.”

IJF Hall of Famer Mr. Franco Cappelletti was among the guests in attendance for the draw and said: “I’m very much looking forward to the competition. The standard is very high and I expect to see some world-class judo here in Budapest.”

FOLLOW THE COMPETITION



WOMEN

-48kg

European champion Eva CSERNOVICZKI (HUN) will have home advantage this weekend and only a herculean effort from one of her rivals can derail her gold medal ambitions. Olympic bronze medallist CSERNOVICZKI will face opposition from judoka such as 19-year-old Tokyo Grand Slam winner KONDO Ami (JPN) who has also been selected for the World Championships in Chelyabinsk. World number 15 Taciana LIMA-BALDE (GBS) will see action before defending her African title next week in Mauritius where she will aim for a World Ranking Points windfall. 

-52kg

World champion Majlinda KELMENDI (KOS) is edging closer to defending her crown in Cherlyabinsk and will view this weekend’s Grand Prix as a key event. European bronze medallist Andreea CHITU (ROU), Paris Grand Slam runner-up Jaana SUNDBERG (FIN) and Baku Grand Slam runner-up Priscilla GNETO (FRA) are all along the elite -52kg judoka.

-57kg

World number one Miryam ROPER (GER) finished fifth at the Havana Grand Prix last time out and will be aiming for a return to the medal podium in Budapest. Olympic champion MATSUMOTO Kaori (JPN), who returned to the World Judo Tour by winning gold at the Dusseldorf Grand Prix in February, will be in action and her unbeaten record in international competitions since London will be on the line. Home judoka Hedvig KARAKAS (HUN) has looked assured on the Grand Prix stage this year and will battle to go all the way in her homeland. 

-63kg

World number three Anicka VAN EMDEN (NED) can close the gap on world number one Clarisse AGBEGNENOU (FRA) and world number two Yarden GERBI (ISR) as both of her nearest rivals are not competing Hungary. Dutch star VAN EMDEN will be tested by a star-laden crop of -63kg judoka including Paris Grand Slam bronze medallist TASHIRO Miku (JPN) and world number 10 Edwige GWEND (ITA) who is growing in stature with every competition. 

-70kg

World number three and world champion Yuri ALVEAR (COL) won the Pan American title in April and has made the long trip to Budapest to vie for Grand Prix honours. Teen star Barbara MATIC (CRO) won bronze at the Havana Grand Prix to add to her stunning European bronze medal and joins Paris Grand Slam silver medallist Fanny Estelle POSVITE (FRA) and World Championships-bound NUNIRA Karen (JPN) in the leading pack for silverware. 

-78kg

European bronze medallist Abigel JOO (HUN) will be the favourite on home soil. The 23-year-old, who finished fifth at the London 2012 Olympics, is only missing world and Olympic honours form her highly-stocked resume. Olympic silver medallist Gemma GIBBONS (GBR) and Samsun Grand Prix silver medallist Natalie POWELL (GRB) are both eminent names in the -78kg field while 20-year-old Baku Grand Slam winner Madeleine MALONGA (FRA) has made smooth transition into senior judo. 

+78kg

Three-time world bronze medallist TACHIMOTO Megumi (JPN) will prepare for another tilt at world honours by fighting in Hungary on Sunday. TACHIMOTO will compete alongside 22-year-old European bronze medallist Jasmin KUELBS (GER) and European runner-up Larisa CERIC (BIH). 


The Official Poster of the Budapest Grand Prix


MEN

-60kg

World champion TAKATO Naohisa (JPN) is undefeated since the 2013 All Japan Judo Championships as he’s dominated the weight category on all fronts. The 21-year-old prodigy has won World Judo Masters gold, Tokyo Grand Slam gold, All Japan gold and most importantly world gold last year in Rio to end his coountry’s 16-year wait for a lightweight world kingpin. World number two and European silver medallist Amiran PAPINASHVILI (GEO) along with world silver medallist DASHDAVAA Amartuvshin (MGL) all take their place in one of the most richly-talented categories at Hungary’s inaugural Judo Grand Prix. 

-66kg

World bronze medallist Georgii ZANTARAIA (UKR) could be the main man in Budapest as he steps up his quest for world honours ahead of the annual showpiece in August. TAKACIHI Kengo (JPN) earned himself selection to his first World Championships by winning the All Japan Championships in April as the 21-year-old took gold while reigning world champion EBINUMA Masashi (JPN) had to settle for bronze. Sugoi URIARTE (ESP) took silver at the Havana Grand Prix and will hope to challenge again in Hungary. 

-73kg

Mongolia’s talismanic former world champion KHASHBAATAR Tsagaanbaatar (MGL) will be looking for a strong performance to ensure he’s at his best when the World Judo Tour returns to the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar in July. Former European medallist Pierre DUPRAT (FRA) and Olympic champion Lasha SHAVDATUASHVILI (GEO) join Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Victor SCVORTOV (UAE) in action on the opening day. 

-81kg

Olympic bronze medallist SAINJARGAL Nyam-Ochir (MGL) looks poised to commit to competing in the -81kg for the Rio 2016 qualifying campaign and has to go back a year to his triumph at the Ulaanbaatar Grand Prix for his last World Judo Tour medal. World bronze medallist Alain SCHMITT (FRA) and two-time World Judo Masters bronze medallist Sirazhudin MAGOMEDOV (RUS) will also grace the tatami. 

-90kg

World number six Noel Van T End is the top seed in Budapest in the -90kg category. The Dutchman took silver at the Baku Grand Slam to follow up on earning the same colour medal at the Dusseldorf Grand Prix. Double world silver medallist NISHIYAMA Daiki (JPN) and Baku Grand Slam winner Guillaume ELMONT (NED) will both be tipped for a tilt at the medal podium. 
  

-100kg

World champion Elkhan MAMMADOV (AZE) will compete on Sunday along with world number two and the man he defeated to clinch the world crown in Rio, world number four Henk GROL (NED). Havana Grand Prix winner Toma NIKIFOROV (BEL) has made a flying start to the Rio 2016 qualification campaign having also won the Madrid European Open in May. Former Tokyo Grand Slam winner Euan BURTON (GBR) makes his last appearance on the World Judo Tour before the 35-year-old competes for Scotland at the Commonwealth Games in July. 

+100kg

European silver medallist Adam OKRUASHVILI (GEO) will be the top seed in the heavyweight category on Sunday. OKRUASHBILI lost out to Chris SHERRINGTON (GBR) in Havana as the Briton made a successful return to the World Judo Tour when he captured a hard-fought silver medal. Dusseldorf Grand Prix winner KAMIKAWA Daiki (JPN) and Samsun Grand Prix bronze medallist MATIASHVILI Levani (GEO) will expect to be among the front-runners. 

COMPETITION PROGRAMME
Saturday
09:00 Preliminaries on four mats
16:30 Opening ceremony
17:00 Final block on two mats

Women: -48kg, -52kg, -57kg, -63kg
Men: -60kg, -66kg, -73kg

Sunday
09:00 Preliminaries on four mats
17:00 Final block on two mats

Women: -70kg, -78kg, +78kg
Men: -81kg, -90kg, -100kg, +100kg

Location: Papp Laszlo Sport Arena

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Chibana the Cat

Brazil's Charles Chibana has an uncanny ability to land on his front, even when thrown by some of Japan's biggest throwers.

In this series of clips, you seen him escaping the throws of Fukuoka, Takajo and Ebinuma by landing on his front.

If he weren't a judo player, maybe he could've been a gymnast. Or perhaps he was a cat in his previous life. 




Monday, June 9, 2014

Judo Grand Prix, Havana 2014 - DAY 3



-78kg | +78kg | -90kg | -100kg | +100kg 


The first Havana Grand Prix came to a pulse-pounding conclusion on Sunday as the heavyweights battled toe-to-toe in the first IJF event in the Rio 2016 Olympic qualification phase.  


Cuba were well represented on the tatami and in the stands as the event will long be remembered for its colour and vibrancy. The three-day Grand Prix captured the imagination of the Cuban faithful who savoured every contest as they witnessed a flagship IJF event unfold at the City Sport Coliseum.  


The women’s -78kg and +78kg categories took to the tatami along with the men’s -90kg, -100kg and +100kg categories.

Mr. Vladimir BARTA, IJF Head Sports Director, believes Cuba was the ideal location to stage the first IJF competition on the road to Rio 2016.

“To deliver a Grand Prix event here in Cuba shows the professionalism of the International Judo Federation and the high level of staff who have been involved in coordinating the event.

“It is extremely important to have a Grand Prix in Havana. This is how we will develop judo and take the sport to a new level and we’ve seen a tremendous amount of interest in the country for this competition which is one of the top-ranked IJF events.” 

IJF Hall of Famer Neil ADAMS shared his thoughts on the start of the qualification campaign and stressed the importance of already being in a healthy position on the World Ranking List.

“Everyone forgets about first two year’s you have to build a solid base during that time. The German team stayed active following the World Championships after Rio and as a result a lot of their athletes are highly-ranked coming into second period.

“Those who haven’t been so active may find it difficult as it puts them under pressure to do a lot of events in order to get ranking points. If they lose one or two matches they have to go to the next event. You have to balance with preparation and events. The road to Rio will be absolutely fascinating and is going to produce some incredible judo and sporting moments.”

Mr. Javier SOTOMAYOR, the Barcelona 1992 Olympic high jump champion and double world champion, was in attendance enjoying the first IJF World Judo Tour experience in his homeland.  

“I’m very pleased to be here at the first Havana Grand Prix, I know all about the history of importance of judo in this country and how well the sport is led by the International Judo Federation,” said the track and field legend.

“I’ve encountered many Cuban judoka during my career and I know their passion and work ethic are up there with any athlete in the world. I wish all athletes good luck with qualifying for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, it is a long testing time to reach an Olympics but I am positive that Cuba will be very well represented in judo and can bring home many medals.”

Toma NIKIFOROV (BEL) won the best male judoka award for his -100kg gold while Laura VARGAS KOCH (GER) won the women’s award for her -70kg triumph. 


The next stop on the road to Rio is the first Budapest Grand Prix from Saturday 21 – Sunday 22 June. 

The full results can be seen at http://www.ippon.org/gp_cub2014.php

For statistics and videos visit http://www.judobase.org


WOMEN

-78kg: Olympic champion returns in style    

Olympic champion Kayla HARRISON (USA) returned from a year-long injury lay-off by taking the -78kg gold medal as world number one and European champion Audrey TCHEUMEO (FRA) had to settle for silver. HARRISON looked like she was never away as she eased into the final where TCHEUMEO received two shido penalties for passivity while the American was penalised once for the same offence. HARRISON has already laid down a timely marker as she works towards defending her Olympic crown in Rio.  


In the first semi-final TCHEUMEO was limited in offense by the stellar work of Pan American Championships silver medallist Catherine ROBERGE (CAN) but the Frenchwoman guaranteed another medal for her country by winning a battle of shido penalties. ROBERGE was penalised on four occasions to receive hansoku-make as she infringed for going out of the area twice and passivity on two occasions. In the second semi-final HARRISON breezed into the gold medal contest by throwing Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Anastasiya DMITRIEVA (RUS) with a uki-goshi for ippon.  

The first bronze medal was won by Beijing Olympic silver medallist Yalennis CASTILLO (CUB) who won her country’s first medal of the day at the expense of beaten semi-finalist DMITRIEVA. The scoreless contest looked set for golden score with both judoka being penalised three times but there was time for the Russian to receive one final penalty for passivity to receive hansoku-make. The second bronze medal contest was won by Samsun Grand Prix winner Luise MALZAHN (GER) who defeated world number nine ROBERGE. MALZAHN fell behind to a waza-ari after ROBERGE countered the ouchi-gari attempt from the world number four by turning her over momentarily. MALZAHN replied by scoring ippon with an explosive pick-up. 

Final
TCHEUMEO, Audrey (FRA) vs HARRISON, Kayla (USA)                               

Bronze Medal Fights
CASTILLO, Yalennis (CUB) vs DMITRIEVA, Anastasiya (RUS)          
MALZAHN, Luise (GER) vs ROBERGE, Catherine (CAN)                    


Final Results
1. HARRISON, Kayla (USA)                                               
2. TCHEUMEO, Audrey (FRA)                        
3. CASTILLO, Yalennis (CUB)                           
3. MALZAHN, Luise (GER)               
5. DMITRIEVA, Anastasiya (RUS)                                   
5. ROBERGE, Catherine (CAN)                                            
7. MARANIC, Ivana (CRO)              
7. BLEIER, Samantha (USA)               


+78kg: MA makes mark

Qingdao Grand Prix runner-up MA Sisi (CHN) took heavyweight gold in Havana as she bested European bronze medallist Franziska KONITZ (GER). MA, who won the Madrid European Open a week ago, and her opponent were only separated after a tense four minutes from a yuko scored by MA who is on the rise in 2014. 


In the first semi-final KONITZ silenced the teeming crowd with the scalp of Olympic and world champion Idalys ORTIZ (CUB). KONITZ was a figure of composure as she forced ORTIZ to make errors and receive shido penalties for stepping out of the area and twice for passivity to lose out on penalties 3-2. In the second semi-final MA stopped the route to the final of cadet world champion Gusmary GARCIA SAVIGNE (CUB) by pinning her down in osaekomi-waza with a mune-gatame.

The first bronze medal was won by Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Ksenia CHIBISOVA (RUS) who ensured GARCIA SAVIGNE left her home event without a medal. CHIBISOVA scored a waza-ari and her Cuban rival accumulated two shido penalties for passivity as she had to settle for a respectable fifth-place. The second bronze medal was clinched by European champion Emilie ANDEOL (FRA) as ORTIZ suffered the same fate as her younger teammate GARCIA SAVIGNE. ORTIZ was penalised for passivity, a false attack and going out of the area as she lacked bite on home soil and lost out by shido penalties with only one against the French fighter.          
   
Final
KONITZ, Franziska (GER) vs MA, Sisi (CHN)                               

Bronze Medal Fights
CHIBISOVA, Ksenia (RUS) vs GARCIA SAVIGNE, Gusmary (CUB)           
ANDEOL, Emilie (FRA) vs ORTIZ, Idalys (CUB)                            


Final Results
1. MA, Sisi (CHN)                                              
2. KONITZ, Franziska (GER)                         
3. CHIBISOVA, Ksenia (RUS)                 
3. ORTIZ, Idalys (CUB)                                  
5. GARCIA SAVIGNE, Gusmary (CUB)                                      
5. ANDEOL, Emilie (FRA)                              
7. ELOR, Ronny (USA)            
7. ZAMBOTTI, Vanessa (MEX)                     


MEN

-90kg: LIPARTELIANI leaves Havana with gold     

World number one and world runner-up Varlam LIPARTELIANI (GEO) emerged victorious in the -90kg final with a dominant display against double Olympic medallist Tiago CAMILO (BRA). CAMILO, who took silver in Sydney 2008 and bronze in Beijing 2008, was returning from a shoulder injury sustained at the 2013 World Judo Masters in Tyumen. LIPARTELIANI, who started the final by being penalised with a shido for an overly defensive grip, then rolled CAMILO who failed with an uchi-mata attack to score waza-ari. The Georgian underlined his status as the man to beat at -90kg by adding a second waza-ari with a ko-soto-gake.  


In the first semi-final LIPARTELIANI won an intriguing all-Georgian contest against Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Beka GVINIASHVILI (GEO). LIPARTELIANI narrowly defeated his 18-year-old teammate with a yuko as GVINIASHVILI offered a rough assignment. In the second semi-final CAMILO defeated European bronze medallist Christophe LAMBERT by ippon after two minutes of action.

The first bronze medal was won by European silver medallist Kirill VOPROSOV (RUS) who threw LAMBERT with a drop seoi-nage after 80 seconds for ippon. The second bronze medal was captured by Junior world champion GVINIASHVILI who countered a ura-nage attempt from Rijeka Grand Prix bronze medallist Ciril GROSSKLAUS (SUI) to catch him with a ko-uchi-gari for ippon with 14 seconds left.

Cuba’s Olympic silver medallist Asley GONZALEZ (CUB) was denied the chance to compete in the Grand Prix before his fans and compatriots as he was ruled out by a shoulder injury. 
  
Final
LIPARTELIANI, Varlam (GEO) vs CAMILO, Tiago (BRA)            

Bronze Medal Fights
VOPROSOV, Kirill (RUS) vs LAMBERT, Christophe (GER)           
GROSSKLAUS, Ciril (SUI) vs GVINIASHVILI, Beka (GEO)                                   


Final Result
1. LIPARTELIANI, Varlam (GEO)                            
2. CAMILO, Tiago (BRA)                                       
3. VOPROSOV, Kirill (RUS)                            
3. GVINIASHVILI, Beka (GEO)                          
5. LAMBERT, Christophe (GER)                                     
5. GROSSKLAUS, Ciril (SUI)                          
7. WENZINGER, Domenik (SUI)            
7. JURECKA, Alexandr (CZE)                


-100kg: Belgian ace signals arrival   

Junior World Championships bronze medallist Toma NIKIFOROV (BEL) was one of the big winners in Cuba as he topped an IJF podium for the first time with victory against Rijeka Grand Prix bronze medallist Flavio ORLIK (SUI). In a fascinating contest featuring two men who have big ambitions in this Olympic cycle, NIKIFOROV, 21, who won three of his four contests by ippon on the final day, settled the final by throwing his 23-year-old Swiss opponent with a drop seoi-nage after 80 seconds. 


In the first semi-final NIKIFOROV, who shocked world number one and European champion Lukas KRPALEK (CZE) in the quarter-final, powered past two-time Pan American champion Hugo PESSANHA (BRA). The Belgian youngster lifted the Brazilian with ease not once but twice as he threw twice with a trademark ura-nage to produce two waza-ari scores. In the second semi-final ORLIK (SUI) saw off European bronze medallist Adlan BISULTANOV (RUS). The Swiss judoka attacked with uchi-mata which had the Russian on the backfoot and ORLIK took full advantage by driving him over with an osoto-gari effort.

The first bronze medal was won by BISULTANOV who returned to winning ways against world number 97 Gergo FOGASY (HUN). BISULTANOV went ahead with a waza-ari from a ko-soto-gake and secured a place on the podium by grinding down the 20-year-old FOGASY in osaekomi as the Russian applied a tate-shiho-gatame for 15 seconds to add a second waza-ari. The second medal was won by PESSANHA who conquered Jeju Grand Prix bronze medallist Martin PACEK (SWE) by submitting him with a ude-garami after leading with a waza-ari from a ko-uchi-gari in an absorbing contest. 

Final
NIKIFOROV, Toma (BEL) vs ORLIK, Flavio (SUI)                    

Bronze Medal Fights
FOGASY, Gergo (HUN) vs BISULTANOV, Adlan (RUS)
PACEK, Martin (SWE) vs PESSANHA, Hugo (BRA)                            


Final Result
1. NIKIFOROV, Toma (BEL)                          
2. ORLIK, Flavio (SUI)                         
3. BISULTANOV, Adlan (RUS)                        
3. PESSANHA, Hugo (BRA)                                
5. FOGASY, Gergo (HUN)                                    
5. PACEK, Martin (SWE)                             
7. KRPALEK, Lukas (CZE)             
7. FONSECA, Jorge (POR)      


+100kg: SAIDOV outguns SHERRINGTON  

Baku Grand Slam bronze medallist Renat SAIDOV (RUS) outgunned surprise package Chris SHERRINGTON (GBR) in the last contest of the first Havana Grand Prix. Former Samsun Grand Prix bronze medallist SHERRINGTON, who will represent Scotland at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games in July, defeated European silver medallist and top seed Adam OKRUASHVILI (GEO) in his opening bout to make a statement of his intent in Havana. Man-mountain SAIDOV looked strong as he floored the British judoka with ashi-waza and Russia’s immovable object added a yuko which went unanswered by SHERRINGTON. 


In the first semi-final Royal Marine SHERRINGTON erased the gold medal hopes of Samsun Grand Prix bronze medallist Levani MATIASHVILI (GEO) who elected to tap out to a forceful kami-shiho-gatame with six seconds remaining. At the same stage of the competition SAIDOV had the measure of former European bronze medallist Barna BOR (HUN) as he bested the Hungarian by ippon after just 23 seconds.

The first bronze medal went to BOR as top seed Adam OKRUASHVILI (GEO) was unable to fight after breaking a rib in the preliminaries. The second bronze medal was won by Beijing 2008 Olympic bronze medallist Oscar BRAYSON (CUB) in 24 seconds by ippon as MATIASHVILI rushed in and was caught with ashi-waza to delight the home crowd.     

Final
SHERRINGTON, Christopher (GBR) vs SAIDOV, Renat (RUS)                            

Bronze Medal Fights
OKRUASHVILI, Adam (GEO) vs BOR, Barna (HUN)          
BRAYSON, Oscar (CUB) vs MATIASHVILI, Levani (GEO)            


Final Result
1. SAIDOV, Renat (RUS)                                        
2. SHERRINGTON, Chris (GBR)                                  
3. BOR, Barna (HUN)                                  
3. BRAYSON, Oscar (CUB)                  
5. OKRUASHVILI, Adam (GEO)                      
5. MATIASHVILI, Levani (GEO)                                                
7. SANTOS, Walter (BRA)   
7. GARCIA MENDOZA, Alex (CUB)